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Letters From the Front

Original Civil War lettersheet with imprinted portrait of the Union Colonel Elmer E. Ellsworth who was one of the first officers killed in the war. The letter is dated January 23, 1862 and was written by Private James Kelly who served in Company A, 9th New York (Hawkins Zouaves) Infantry. An original CDV photo of a Union soldier and a mechanical pencil patented in 1859 are also shown. (Bill Howard Collection) During the American Civil War, the letters written back and forth between soldiers and their families offered an important lifeline. Letters were important and helped to sustain morale in the field and kept families informed of what was happening in camp and on the battlefield. Sold

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